DMK to form panel to solve impasse over Annur industrial park at Nilgiris

The ruling DMK will constitute a panel to solve the issue regarding the Annur industrial park in the Nilgiris district. Member of Parliament from Nilgiris constituency and former Union Minister, A. Raja will be constituting a panel to negotiate on the formation of the industrial park at Annur which is mired in protests.

The committee will have seven members from the farmer’s organisation besides the concerned MP, MLAs from Annur and Mettupalayam, district collector, chairman of TIDCO, and RDO Coimbatore.

According to sources in DMK, Raja will be conducting a meeting with the Chairman of the TIDCO along with the representatives of the farmers to clear the ‘misconception’ between both sides.

It may be noted that while the government is of the view that 1635 acres of land belonging to private enterprises were available, farmers had denied the claim and said that only 815 acres of land were owned by private firms.

Farmer leaders however told media persons that the TIDCO chairman will clear on the availability of land in the proposed Annur industrial area after the meeting with the farmer’s association leaders. The leaders said that the land is not available in a single parcel and scattered across 86 localities.

Raja had earlier told media persons that he had met Chief Minister, M.K. Stalin, and industries minister, Thangam Thenarasu, and said that the government would not acquire cultivable lands from the farmers and instead would opt for dry land of around 2.000 acres.

However farmer association leaders are unfazed and state president of Tamil Nadu Vivasayigal Sangam, T. Venugopal who led the protest of the farmers against acquisition of land, while speaking to media persons said, “The industries that will come up in the proposed Annur industrial park will acquire more land for the expansion process and might affect the farmers at a later stage. Moreover, there would be industries that would lead to groundwater depletion and pollution of natural water resources.”

Raja brushed aside the criticisms of pollution and said that the Central and state governments would ensure that only non-polluting industries would be part of the cluster and added that a defence corridor has already been planned in the area.

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